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Sramana Mitra: If you could provide us with some background about yourself as well as Signafire to start us off, that would be great.
Marc Alacqua: I’m the CEO and Co-Founder of Signafire. Steve Davis is one of my partners and also Co-Founder. I come from the military world. The origins of our company are from that world. I’m an ex-army officer and worked in special operations. Signafire was born out of the post-9/11 world where there was a mandate in the intelligence world to break down the silos of data across various agencies and to bring technology to bear to bring the intel world out of what was still a World War II mentality of how to do intelligence, to take all that data which people are having a hard time making decisions with, and to allow the weak signals in that data bubble up to decision makers in a more accessible way.
Steve was the technical team lead in an organization with that mandate. Going back to 2010, a group of us decided to get out of government to commercialize some of our lessons and Signafire is the fruit of that effort to take lessons we learned in the defense and intel world and help big companies make the most of the data they have.
Whether it’s insurance, healthcare, finance, they run across some of the same issues that we saw in the government world – lots of legacy systems with data that’s not readily accessible at one place. Those are the lessons we bring to bear.
Steve Davis: I’m the Chief Technology Officer and Co-Founder at Signafire. I spent a lot of time with defense and intel working for a variety of customers and problem sets. The main focus was supporting special operations and creating tools and technology architectures to take advantage of lots of disparate kinds of data and save analysts’ time – make it more efficient for analysts to find important information to analyze it in meaningful ways and ultimately, be able to create the assessments and insights that they needed.
As Marc said, we’re taking the lessons learned in our past experience and applying them here at Signafire to all kinds of commercial endeavors to take advantage of data that is either traditionally not used for analysis or just too big to manage for analysts. That’s the kind of technology that we build.
Here at Signafire, my role as Chief Technology Officer is to work with our internal analysts, our sales teams, and our engineering department along with the larger tech community to figure out how to evolve our systems to bring the most value to our customers and their problems.